fredag 3. september 2021

After Government Crackdown, What’s Next for China’s Edtech Firms?

After posting stellar growth in 2020, Chinese education technology, or edtech, firms took a serious hit this summer. Concerned about high-stress education and falling birthrates, the government cracked down on profit-making, K-12 tutoring firms, which are now limited in their ability to earn, raise capital, or go public. Late last month, regulations were also tightened on foreign educators and teachers from public schools working in after-class centers.

If observers were surprised by the new measures, it was only by their extent. Both central and local governments in China have been reining in profitable after-school services since at least 2017, when the “Guiding Opinions of the Ministry of Education on After-School Services for Primary and Secondary School Students” were published. Suining No. 1 Middle School offered after-school reading services starting in 2019, while Beijing recently extended its public school day by two hours, cutting into the time students were spending in private tutoring centers. Last year, the Shaanxi government announced its schools could start charging after-school service fees while ensuring students with financial difficulties would be offered subsidies.